Sabotaging Sabarimala Pilgrimage: Pilgrims Stopped from using Pulmedu Forest Path

published on December 11, 2014

Idukki: The Forest Department is the latest to add to the woes of Sabarimala bound pilgrims. According to latest reports, they have caused undue obstructions to the passage of pilgrims hailing from other states, who have made the offering of reaching the shrine by foot, by sealing the jungle path to the holy shrine via Pulmedu.

Sources have stated that the Forest Department has resorted to this gross injustice by quoting a non-existent court order. According to Deputy Director of Periyar Tiger (West Division) Babu, the Court had issued a directive of not granting permission to Sabarimala bound pilgrims to travel on foot via the customary forest path, following
the disaster that took place in Pulmedu. However, the statement made by Babu sharply contradicts reality.

“The Court directive clearly states that Government vehicles alone can ply in the route between Naalaam Mile and Uppupaara. There stands no Court objection to the passage of pilgrims from Vallakadavu to Sabarimala via Pulmedu. This being the scenario, the actual sabotaging of Court order is being done by Forest Department and District
Administrative authorities. Also, pilgrims on foot had in fact resorted to the path via Pulmedu the previous three years, following the tragedy that had happened. They were provided with quite a lot of facilities by Water Authority and Electricity Board. There were shops sponsored by Eco Development Committee that provided provisions and
food supplies to pilgrims,” said sources.

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